I was Gina Schocked to see how packed Roseland Ballroom was for the double-billed Generation X music extravaganza that was The Go-Go’s and The B-52s. And I couldn’t be more proud. These are two bands I see every time they tour because they’re two of my favorites, from the ’80s and just totally awesome.
The ladies from La La Land were up first and appropriately opened with “Get Up And Go” off Vacation. Most of the songs they performed were from their classic 1981 debut album Beauty and the Beat. “Tonite,” “This Town” and “Lust to Love” are my favorites and “How Much More,” Belinda’s favorite. While all the hits were covered, it’s the covers and mash-up gems I always look forward to. This time it was “We Got the Beat” mashed up with “Rock and Roll All Nite” by Kiss. I can’t help but love the Go-Go’s. Belinda has the best hair in the business and her arm choreography makes me smile. It’s the same moves she’s been doing forever.
Where’s bassist Kathy Valentine? When I saw the Go-Go’s last year, she was not in the band. Billboard reported that she split from the band in May 2013 citing “irreconcilable differences.” That’s so LA. Then it was reported Valentine is suing the band citing the four remaining members formed a new entity that would dilute Valentine of her 20 percent of band revenues. I supposed the Go-Go’s drama continues. It’s a shame.
So deliciously weird is everyone’s favorite party band from Athens, Ga., or perhaps they’re really from “Planet Claire.” Lots of obscure picks including “Girl from Ipanema Goes to Greenland,” Lava” and “Dance This Mess Around” made me happy to be there. Kate Pierson was especially on fire with her wacky, whimsical and weirdly amazing dancing had me smiling from “Mesopotamia” to “My Own Private Idaho.” She looked amazing to boot. Great dress, hair and maraca. Cindy was recovering from being ill so her voice was a little shot, but it’s ok, I love her and her big bouffant. What’s that on your head? A ‘Wig!” It was the first double-billed night of their summer tour. If they’re coming your way, don’t miss it. Roam on in and get some skid marks on your heart.
Here are a dozen essential CenterOrch picks for the B-52s and the Go-Go’s with none of the usual suspects: